BearsBeat.com 2009 Draft Board: Running Back

April 6th, 2009 - 12:00 am

Here’s a look at how I feel about the 2009 running back prospects. The order may change as draft day nears.

1. Knowshon Moreno – Georgia
Height: 5-11 | Weight: 208 | 40-time: 4.45
What I like about him: He runs extremely hard and actively — which is to say he uses the spin move and juke to get by defenders in the open field.
What I don’t like about him: Doesn’t have a whole lot of bulk, and although he’s fast, he doesn’t have elite speed.

Watch Video


2. Chris Wells – Ohio State
Height: 6-1 | Weight: 237 | 40-time: 4.50
What I like about him: Protects the football and runs with good power and speed for his size. Has good vision.
What I don’t like about him: Runs too upright and can take a beating when hit. Doesn’t look as fluid with the ball as other runners. Needs to hone his route running and pass catching.

Watch Video


3. LeSean McCoy – Pittsburgh
Height: 5-11 | Weight: 210 | 40-time: 4.30
What I like about him: He has great vision and is a shifty runner. He looks like a receiver sometimes with his pass-catching ability.
What I don’t like about him: His personality can rub some people the wrong way and he might not hold up as strictly a between-the-tackles runner. He doesn’t have breakaway speed and can be caught from behind.

Watch Video


4. Donald Brown – Connecticut
Height: 5-10 | Weight: 210 | 40-time: 4.40
What I like about him: He can be a workhorse and carry the ball 20+ times a game. He’s a willing and able blocker and he can break tackles.
What I don’t like about him: He doesn’t have any physical characteristics that will wow people like elite speed or particular power and agility.

Watch Video


5. Shonn Greene – Iowa
Height: 5-11 | Weight: 235 | 40-time: 4.55
What I like about him: He was very productive and has good size. He’ll run through tacklers and will be difficult to drag down.
What I don’t like about him: He wasn’t used much as a receiver. Not particularly fluid or graceful on his feet. He’ll also be 24 when the season starts, and running backs already have short careers in the NFL.

Watch Video


6. Andre Brown – North Carolina State
Height: 6-0 | Weight: 224 | 40-time: 4.49
What I like about him: Is a good receiver with reliable hands and will finish off his runs with good leg drive.
What I don’t like about him: Doesn’t have elite speed and sometimes it takes him several carries to get into a rhythm.


7. Glenn Coffee – Alabama
Height: 6-2 | Weight: 200 | 40-time: 4.50
What I like about him: Was only a few yards behind Knowshon Moreno in SEC rushing. He’ll lower his shoulder and take the ball between the tackles. He’s a willing blocker.
What I don’t like about him: He needs to add a little bulk and he’s not overly shifty, meaning he won’t make a lot of guys miss.


8. Javon Ringer – Michigan State
Height: 5-9 | Weight: 200 | 40-time: 4.55
What I like about him: He’s a tough runner with determination who can find the crease and burst through it.
What I don’t like about him: Doesn’t have good size or breakaway speed, and already has a lot of tread on his tires.


9. Cedric Peerman – Virginia
Height: 5-9 | Weight: 210 | 40-time: 4.50
What I like about him: He’s built well and has good fundamentals, such as running with his shoulders square and using vision and balance.
What I don’t like about him: He doesn’t have a whole lot of size and durability might be an issue with his injury history.


10. James Davis – Clemson
Height: 5-11 | Weight: 210 | 40-time: 4.50
What I like about him: He’s got good vision and patience and uses his blockers well. Has a nose for the end zone and could be a good goal line runner in the NFL.
What I don’t like about him: He doesn’t have elite power or speed, nor does he have lateral agility or fluidity.


11. Jeremiah Johnson – Oregon
Height: 5-9 | Weight: 198 | 40-time: 4.54
What I like about him: Could be the best open-field runner as he’s got good outside speed and a solid stiff-arm.
What I don’t like about him: Could have durability issues and is not a strong inside runner.


12. Rashad Jennings – Liberty
Height: 6-1 | Weight: 234 | 40-time: 4.59
What I like about him: Has good size and strength and can wear down defenses. He’s not likely to go down easily with arm tackles.
What I don’t like about him: Doesn’t have great speed or elusiveness and played against marginal competition.


13. Mike Goodson – Texas A&M
Height: 5-11 | Weight: 195 | 40-time: 4.40
What I like about him: He’s got great vision, instincts and cutting ability. He’s got good foot quickness and runs hard with a purpose.
What I don’t like about him: His durability could be a concern because he doesn’t have great size. Character issues surround him as well.


14. P.J. Hill – Wisconsin
Height: 5-11 | Weight: 235 | 40-time: 4.60
What I like about him: Played in the Big Ten. Has good size, although is not very tall. He runs like a truck and does not go down easily.
What I don’t like about him: Continuing the truck analogy, it takes him a while to get going. He doesn’t have any speed and he sometimes relies too much on his size and won’t sink his hips and run through contact.


15. Gartrell Johnson – Colorado State
Height: 5-11 | Weight: 222 | 40-time: 4.60
What I like about him: He sheds contact well so will be tough to bring down. He is well built and runs with power and burst through the hole.
What I don’t like about him: He lacks top-end speed and is not going to run away from anybody.


16. Arian Foster – Tennessee
Height: 6-1 | Weight: 232 | 40-time: 4.60
What I like about him: He’s got ideal running back size and good hands. He catches the ball cleanly and gets up the field after the catch.
What I don’t like about him: He did not have a good senior season. He’s not a big-play threat and doesn’t run with great power.


17. Kory Sheets – Purdue
Height: 5-11 | Weight: 203 | 40-time: 4.47
What I like about him: Was a good receiver out of the backfield in a pass-friendly offense. He’s got good balance and body control.
What I don’t like about him: He doesn’t have the size most NFL teams are looking for and has character and maturity issues. Not a very good blocker.


18. Aaron Brown – Texas Christian
Height: 6-1 | Weight: 196 | 40-time: 4.45
What I like about him: He’s elusive with quick feet and change-of-direction ability. He’s also got good body control and route-running ability.
What I don’t like about him: Probably does not have the ability to run between the tackles in the NFL.


19. Marlon Lucky – Nebraska
Height: 5-11 | Weight: 212 | 40-time: 4.59
What I like about him: One of the best backs in this class as a receiver out of the backfield. Has good hands and natural instincts.
What I don’t like about him: Doesn’t hit the hole hard, break away from tacklers, or block particularly well.


20. Devin Moore – Wyoming
Height: 5-10 | Weight: 191 | 40-time: N/A
What I like about him: He’s got good speed and is one of the fastest backs in this class. He’s elusive in the open field and could be a good third-down or situational back.
What I don’t like about him: He’s not going to be an every-down back or even a featured one. He’s undersized and has very little power or strength.


21. Antone Smith – Florida State
Height: 5-9 | Weight: 190 | 40-time: 4.50
What I like about him: Good vision and shiftiness. He can make defenders miss with his agility.
What I don’t like about him: He’s very small and runs too upright. He’s had injuries and fumbling issues.


22. Tyrell Sutton – Northwestern
Height: 5-8 | Weight: 210 | 40-time: 4.60
What I like about him: He shows good burst and elusiveness and can catch the ball as well.
What I don’t like about him: Doesn’t have great size, bulk, strength, or durability.


23. Javarris Williams – Tennessee State
Height: 5-9 | Weight: 219 | 40-time: 4.55
What I like about him: He’s got a nose for the end zone and could be a short-yardage back. I’ve seen him listed as a fullback, too.
What I don’t like about him: Doesn’t have great speed and won’t blow by anybody. He’s got a good frame, but his lower-body strength is questionable.


24. Ian Johnson – Boise State
Height: 5-11 | Weight: 204 | 40-time: 4.56
What I like about him: He’s got good instincts and vision and will follow his blockers. He can squeeze through tight places.
What I don’t like about him: His straight-line speed isn’t as admirable as his quickness. He’s not going to make a lot of guys miss and he could have durability issues.


25. Bernard Scott – Abilene Christian
Height: 5-10 | Weight: 199 | 40-time: 4.52
What I like about him: Could be a sleeper from a small school. He runs with intensity and has good strength and balance.
What I don’t like about him: He’s not overly fluid and doesn’t have great speed.


Others:
Anthony Kimble – Stanford
Brad Lester – Auburn
Branden Ore – West Liberty State
Curtis Brinkley – Syracuse
Herb Donaldson – Western Illinois
Joshua Vaughn – Richmond
Kahlil Bell – UCLA
Keegan Herring – Arizona State
Kestahn Moore – Florida
LaRod Stephens-Howling – Pittsburgh
Luke Lippincott – Nevada
Marcus Thigpen – Indiana
Mike Davis – South Carolina
Rodney Ferguson – New Mexico
Shannon Woods – Texas Tech
Tarrion Adams – Tulsa
Tony Dixon – Kentucky
Tyrell Fenroy – Louisiana-Lafayette